Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of jrsocmedLink to Publisher's site
J R Soc Med. 1983 July; 76(7): 545–549.
PMCID: PMC1439124

Head injury and mental handicap.


A clinical and pathological study of head injury and the implications in mental handicap are outlined. Non-accidental injury as a form of child abuse is suspected as contributing considerably to the cause of mental handicap in populations resident in long-stay hospital, but this is unlikely to be the best environment for such patients. A number of mentally handicapped epileptic patients who injure their heads during fits and patients who repeatedly bang their heads as a feature of self-injurious behaviour are exposed to progressive neurological deficits associated with lesions in the brain which could further impair the efficiency of brain function.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (727K), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • BRANDON MW, KIRMAN BH, WILLIAMS CE. Microcephaly. J Ment Sci. 1959 Jul;105:721–747. [PubMed]
  • Caffey J. The whiplash shaken infant syndrome: manual shaking by the extremities with whiplash-induced intracranial and intraocular bleedings, linked with residual permanent brain damage and mental retardation. Pediatrics. 1974 Oct;54(4):396–403. [PubMed]
  • Corsellis JA, Bruton CJ, Freeman-Browne D. The aftermath of boxing. Psychol Med. 1973 Aug;3(3):270–303. [PubMed]
  • Davison AN, Dobbing J. Myelination as a vulnerable period in brain development. Br Med Bull. 1966 Jan;22(1):40–44. [PubMed]
  • Gregg GS, Elmer E. Infant injuries: accident or abuse? Pediatrics. 1969 Sep;44(3):434–439. [PubMed]
  • The N.H.S. reorganization--Mark 3. Br Med J. 1971 May 22;2(5759):420–420. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • KEMPE CH, SILVERMAN FN, STEELE BF, DROEGEMUELLER W, SILVER HK. The battered-child syndrome. JAMA. 1962 Jul 7;181:17–24. [PubMed]
  • Lewin W. Rehabilitation after head injury. Br Med J. 1968 Feb 24;1(5590):465–470. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • London PS. Some observations on the course of events after severe injury of the head. Hunterian Lecture delivered at the Royal College of Surgeons of England on12th January 1967. Ann R Coll Surg Engl. 1967 Dec;41(6):460–479. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Matin MA, Rundle AT. Physiological and psychiatric investigations into a group of mentally handicapped subjects with self-injurious behaviour. J Ment Defic Res. 1980 Jun;24(2):77–85. [PubMed]
  • Oliver JE. Microcephaly following baby battering and shaking. Br Med J. 1975 May 3;2(5965):262–264. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Steadman JH, Graham JG. Head injuries: an analysis and follow-up study. Proc R Soc Med. 1970 Jan;63(1):23–28. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine are provided here courtesy of Royal Society of Medicine Press